HC Deb 11 March 1991 vol 187 cc408-9W
Mr. Viggers

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will explain the rules which govern the restoration of a widow's pension in circumstances where a woman has been widowed a first time and granted a Ministry of Defence pension, subsequently remarries, so losing her Ministry of Defence pension, and is then widowed a second time and seeks restoration of her Ministry of Defence pension.

Mr. Kenneth Carlisle

Under the rules both of the armed forces pension scheme and of the principal civil service pension scheme, a widow loses her entitlement to a widow's pension on remarriage. Any subsequent resumption of payment is discretionary, but a pension may be restored to a widow on second widowhood if she is worse off after her second husband's death, without her former public service widow's pension, than she was on first widowhood with that pension.

Discretion to restore the pension lies with the Ministry of Defence in respect of the armed forces pension scheme, and with Her Majesty's Treasury in respect of the principal civil service pension scheme. In both cases, account is taken of all the widow's financial circumstances, including any pension entitlement which may accrue to her from her second marriage.